Horse get hurt. That seems to be a fact of life for horse owners. Somehow the cost of veterinary services for an injury seems to be in direct relationship with the overall financial value of the horse. But no matter how much your horse cost, it is a good idea to be able to hand emergencies as they come up – because, no matter how much preventative care you take, they will come up.
Publisher and Editor
The Properly Loaded Emergency Bucket
The past 6 years of boarding and caring for horses has renewed my belief in having a an emergency kit at hand. My kit is kept in an empty 25lb Dynamite Vitamin bucket with a tight lid. Due to my belief in herbs, homeopathic remedies and holistic products my First Aid Kit may look a little different than yours.
First – Rescue Remedy. Why is this more important than bandages? Recent experience has reminded me how even the most experienced of animal owners can be affected by shock when faced with an animal in serious pain. Rescue Remedy can be given to both the humans and the animals to counteract shock and get our brains functioning again. When I found a mare laying in a pool of her own blood, I needed it as much as she did. (She eventually full recovered.)
If your horse is in serious pain it may be thrashing and can hurt itself further or hurt those trying to help. Talk to your veterinarian about having both a rapid painkiller (perhaps Banamine) and a sedative (Ace) on hand. Be sure that you know how to properly administer it. I also keep Amazon Herb’s Recovazon on hand to lower pain levels without chemicals – it can be given directly into the mouth as an anti-inflammatory and on the wound before and after suturing. Also Relax – a Bach Flower Essence for fear and anxiety can make life easier.
Next, we need to clean and flush wounds. Your bucket should include one or more of the following: GSE (grapefruit seed extract – 60 drops per 16 oz of water) – I have spray bottles of water with grapefruit seed extract hanging in every barn as well as in my first aid kit. GSE is non-toxic, yet highly potent for killing germs. We wash our hands with it, add it to laundry and clean wounds with it. Another good antiseptic is a properly diluted iodine solution such as Betadine. Also keep 3% hydrogen peroxide on hand to flush deep wounds or punctures. It is hard on tissue so it should be used with caution.
Sometimes you need to stop wounds from bleeding. Trace Minerals Concentrate is a critical piece to keep in your kit. It can stop even arterial blood spurts, dries the wound and prevents infection. We use it after removing teeth, on cuts, on infected wounds and any “goopy” problem.
Equally important is what to apply to wounds before bandaging. I never leave the house without Sangre De Drago. Sangre is an herb that stops bleeding, prevents infection and, when applied to clean wounds, forms a latex-like scab. It also seals the nerve endings and helps to stop the pain. It should, however, never be used in the eye as it dries up mucus membranes. If you prefer an ointment such as Neosporin or Nolvasan include those as well.
A topical eye treatment is also important. I like a good quality colloidal silver such as Solace. Or you might prefer a non-steroidal eye ointment. The colloidal silver can also be used to sterilize wounds.
The stress of emergencies can shut down digestion and lead to colic. And, of course, colic can be an emergency by itself. We always keep Dyna-Pro – a liquid, activated probiotic on hand to get digestion back on track and lower stress levels.
What’s in my Emergency Bucket?
- Rescue Remedy
- Pain killers: Banamine, Recovazon
- Cleaners – GSE water, Betadine, H2O2
- Sangre de Drago
- Colloidal Silver (Solace)
- Liquid active probiotic (Dyna-Pro)
- Clleaned, boiled and bagged soft towels
- Sterile gauze sponges
- Sterile, non-stick gauze pads
- Sterile gauze roll to pad and protect the wound
- Self-adhesive tape (like Vet-Wrap)
- Blunt-tipped bandage scissors
- Bulb Syringe
- 100 cc syringe (for drenching probiotics and meds)
- Rectal Thermometer (temp should be 99 – 101 degrees)
Other Important items to have on hand are:
- Hoof Pick
- Non-Toxic Fly Spray
- Leatherman tool with wire cutters
- Medicating hoof boot
- Polo Wraps with Diaper Pins – great for wrapping wounds
- Diapers or bed liners – for covering wounds
So grab an extra bucket and start filling it with your favorite emergency items. May you never need it!